Old Pickups

Every morning on my walk I see a blue chev pickup, the kind with the square body and truck bed circa 1960 or so. While it is slightly less than mint condition still it is a beauty. I love just looking at it but most of all because it reminds me of my childhood and the pickup my stepfather,” Wild Bill” used to drive.
His was a Dodge or a Plymouth truck, the kind with the rounded fenders and hood that would have made it around a 1955 model. I’m just guessing, I really didn’t pay attention at the time.
All I remember is it being filled with fertilizer, bricks and cement or a lawnmower. When I think of it that’s not all, I remember the smell of fertilizer, cut grass and the ever present heat of Arizona summers.
I first drove in that truck. I was twelve and my mother was in the hospital for something or another, all I know is it wasn’t serious. She held a pretty hard reign over me so when she was gone and the rules were relaxed Wild Bill, would teach me about and respect for the desert, tell me stories of his adventures as a young man, show me how to clean and shoot a Colt45, and one afternoon when we were out in the middle of nowhere he gave me my first driving lesson in that already old pickup. I was twelve, everything looked old.
Funny how moments like that are etched on your mind, I didn’t drive again until I was 24 and took driver lessons from a professional but that day in the desert I felt trusted, confident and “like” everyone else. The desert was perfect terrain, no one was around so I could practice without any danger and I couldn’t go to fast since we were on a dirt road With miles of cactus around us.
I don’t know what happened to that truck. The last time I saw it was just after Wild Bill died in 1971. I went to Phoenix and I should have, but didn’t bring, the truck back with me to Albuquerque where I was living. I had just bought my first car and couldn’t see the value in keeping the truck. I’m sure my mother sold it, she didn’t drive, but to this day I wish I’d taken it myself, fixed it up and kept it. I wonder just what it might be worth? In looking through web sites for similar pickups I found one about the same age that originally sold for $ 1,345.00.
Today they It is priced at $ 13, 345.00, quite a markup.
Last night I did find a picture, which is below. The pickup turned out to be a Dodge series 100 and has a more square body than I remember. Ah well it was over 50 years ago. I’m lucky I found the picture, if only I had taken that truck, I could be driving it now.
The people in the truck are my mother and in the drivers seat is Wild Bill. That shadow is me taking the picture. It was taken in Paradise Valley, at the time In the outskirts of Phoenix.
Happy Trails



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